directed by Charles Crichton + John Cleese (uncredited)
USA/UK 1988

 

A perfectly old-fashioned romantic comedy, big on caper, generous on Ealing, and heavy on the twisted stereotypes. Cleese scripts and stars as London barrister Archie Leach, hired to defend a gem thief, and earning a much-vaunted 'sex symbol' tag with the affections of gangster's moll Wanda Gershwitz (Curtis). It's a plot too jagged to document in full - Where are the gems? Who has the safe-deposit key? Who's betraying whom? Is the London Underground really a political movement? - but the interest lies less in outcome than in character: Palin as a madly stuttering, animal-loving dog-murderer, Kline as a maybe-CIA cruel paranoid pseudo who's intermittently Wanda's lover/gay brother, and Cleese and Curtis as the most unlikely rug-tearers since Miller and Monroe. There's nothing deep, nothing ground-breaking, but it's a never-dull, tightly scripted yarn with some very funny gags.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE

Poster

 

Theatrical Release: July 7th, 1988

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Comparison: 

MGM - Region 1 - NTSC vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC LEFT vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC RIGHT)

DVD Box Cover

Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition)

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:48:20 1:47:44

Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.97 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.6 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate : MGM

Bitrate: MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition)

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono) English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 1.0), DUB: French (Dolby Digital 1.0), Spanish  (Dolby Digital 1.0)
Subtitles English, French, None English, French, Spanish, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Theatrical Trailer (1:27 / 4:3)

DVD Release Date: March 23rd, 1999
Keep case

Chapters 32

Release Information:
Studio: MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition)
 

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Commentary by John Cleese

• Optional Trivia Track
• Deleted and alternate scenes with introductions by John Cleese
• "Something Fishy" new featurette
• Archival featurettes: "John Cleese's First Farewell Performance," "Farewell Featurette: John Cleese," "Kulture Vulture"
• A Message From John Cleese
• "Mug Shots" still gallery
• Theatrical trailer
• Easter Eggs
 

DVD Release Date: November 21st, 2006
Double Slim Keep Case inside cardboard box

Chapters 28

 

Comments:

I wouldn't say the new 2-disc Collector's Edition image is perfect, but it is light years ahead of the old non-anamorphic one. Sharper, brighter colors, clearer... better subtitles (and more options), upgraded audio, more extras etc. etc. The new image does have a few poorer points - some digital noise, I suspect some black/red boosting and a few speckles can still be seen. There was a 2-disc 'Deluxe Edition' that came out in 2004 and it wouldn't surprise me if not much has been updated from that by MGM. But I don't own it so I can't be positive, although extras look suspiciously duplicated.

The Cleese commentary is as engaging as he is, but there are some gaps. He talks a lot about the cast and crew - his inspiration - and elicits much praise to Kevin Kline and Jamie Lee Curtis. The Trivia pop-ups are kind of gimmicky and I can't see too many people being amused by them. There is a 2nd disc with some interesting material and a cute 'Message From John Cleese'. It shows a mark up from usual MGM thrown-together digital discs and I'm glad to own it. Apologies that I couldn't compare to the Deluxe but this appears to be the same price tag. 

Gary W. Tooze

 



DVD Menus

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC LEFT vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC RIGHT)

 

Disc 2 - MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition)

 


Screen Captures

 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)
Subtitle Sample: Not exact frame

 

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 


 

(MGM - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC BOTTOM)

 

DVD Box Cover

Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM (2-disc Collector's Edition)

Region 1 - NTSC

 


Report Card:

 

Image:

MGM Collector's edition

Sound:

MGM Collector's edition

Extras: MGM Collector's edition
Menu: MGM Collector's edition

 


 



 

Hit Counter

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

Mail cheques, money orders, cash to:    or CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You